Parallel lives. That’s what we are living at the moment. We are in a more settled time and Oliver is progressing slowly but well. This has given us time to think about a few other things, first and foremost, our home.
We are those continuous renovators, we all have friends like that. It took us 18 months to finish the bathroom. But things have progressed at a terrifyingly rapid pace over the last month, very unlike us!
There’s a ‘normal’ with Oliver now that lets us make plans for the future, because he’s actually coming home (oh boy!).
Suddenly you realise you can’t just bring him home to a house full of dust and dirt and damp. That’s a sure fire way to ensure we spend the rest of the year in and out of hospital. His fragile lungs and vulnerable immune system mean he needs a warm, dry, totally clean home to be in.
Calling in those offers for help!!
Somehow we have insulated and relined all of the bedrooms, reinforced the roof and ceiling and begun work on a new and improved kitchen/dining/living area, while living at the hospital with our boys.
As you can imagine this is exhausting at the best of times, right now it’s (what’s more tiring than exhausting?) …relentless. Oliver has his mum by his side all day, every day at the hospital, while his dad works 12-14 hours each day on his house, so that when he does get to come home with us, he’s safe.
Our minds are confused, we think about milk, flow, breathing and sodium, at the same time as thinking about blinds, cupboards, floorboards and paint.
Needless to say making final decisions is hard.
But we are adults, and we have learnt how to multitask, we can manage this, and although it makes us tired, it’ll be fantastic in the end.
This week while his parents frantically multitask to get this project completed, Oliver has to learn to multitask himself!
We have moved on to the ‘breastfeeding’ stage. The team encouraged me this week to start offering him a breast feed before his tube feeds at least three times a day. He has taken to it like a champ, he sure knows what to do! But there are three things that he needs to do, all at the same time and these are proving difficult. Sucking, swallowing and breathing.
The sucking and swallowing has started well, he’s latching and rhythmically suckling and swallowing. Which is fantastic. It’s the breathing he’s struggling with, while he gets so involved with the feeding he forgets that he needs to take a breath. Just a minor detail.
Like the renovations, his coordination will take time. It’s exciting and scary and I’m so proud of him and his dad, both of them working so hard, so that we can all be home together.
Let’s just hope they work at the same pace, or Oliver won’t have a home ready to come back to!